Today Epic Games announced new quests coming to Fortnite, but there’s a catch. In order to get these quests you have to watch someone streaming the game on Twitch. OK technically you have to be logged into a device that has Fortnite streaming…no one is forcing you to stare at it.
This is a little irritating to me. The Fortnite devs have been replying to MANY criticisms of the game with some variation on the theme of “This is Early Access, there are a lot of things we need to improve or build but it’s going to take time.” So they don’t have time to add proper tutorials or overhaul the clunky UI, but they do have time to develop quests for Twitch users. Their priorities are a little irritating.
But what has me seeing red is a nuance of these Twitch quests. There are two tiers of these “Viewer Quests.” The first one, anyone can get as long as they’ve linked their Twitch account to their Epic account. But the quests with better rewards are limited to people who subscribe to a Twitch streamer. This pisses me off.
Here’s why. First, there’s a lot of noise, now that people have been playing for a few days, about how Fortnite is Pay-To-Win. See there’re two kinds of loot in Fortnite. You can jump into a mission and open chests and find traps and guns. That’s great and all but traps are one use and guns wear out (pretty quickly). The better loot is Schematics that let you craft as many traps and guns as you like.
With me so far?
You only get schematics from Loot Boxes (called Llamas in Fortnite). You can earn some “mini-Llamas” by doing Shield Defense Quests, but for the most part you have to buy Llamas, either with V-Coins (which you can purchase with real money) or Founders Coins, which you generally get from Llamas. Early in your Fortnite career you can earn V-Coins by doing “Challenges” but those cap out early enough that plenty of people have now done them all. Once they’re finished, the only way you can get Llamas, and from Llamas better schematics (you hope…it’s all a gambling system), is through purchasing V-Coins with real money or somehow getting Founders Coins.
And there’s 1 way to earn Founder’s Coins that I know of. By doing the Twitch Subscriber quests.
So here’s Epic’s gameplan for you. Spend $40 to get into Early Access of the game. Play for a while and earn V-Coins to buy your first full llamas. Then when you’ve exhausted that system, pay some streamer $5/month to subscribe to his/her channel, leave your account sitting on the channel and hope that you are randomly selected to get the quest that you can do in-game to earn Founder’s Coin.
THAT is the system they’re working on while you’re sitting there frustrated that you can’t even view your inventory without starting up a mission.
Really screwed up priorities and a big middle finger directed at early supporters who don’t choose to spend money to watch some stranger play a game on Twitch. (Oh and if you prefer to stream on YouTube or Mixer or somewhere else? You too are getting the middle finger.)
I’m not rage-quitting Fortnite over this; I’ve already spent $60 on the game. But I won’t be spending any more money until they demonstrate that they value all their customers equally. If I get to where I can’t progress without spending money I’ll just play something else.
I’m done supporting the game, though, and won’t be blogging about it any more. And I suggest that if you’re interested in it, you wait a while to see what kind of company Epic is going to be, because right now that whole Free-To-Play model (which of course isn’t even free yet) is looking pretty ugly, and the company doesn’t care about you as a customer unless you’re promoting their game by streaming it.